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FTSE 100

NICKY BATTYE Many happy returns!

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NEIL WILSON Zero-hour approaches Column - Page 5

An EXAMINER publication

KIRKLEES BUSINESS NEWS The business NEWSpaper for Kirklees

Firm investing for further expansion A FIRM designing and installing production lines for a range of industries is set to pursue further business opportunities by opening a new research and development centre. Sewtec, which provides bespoke production lines for use in the food, tobacco, confectionery, personal care and pharmaceutical industries, has invested £500,000 in the new centre at its premises at Ravensthorpe Industrial Estate. The centre will support customer projects and enable Sewtec to further develop their range of robotic solutions to grow its business. The official opening was performed by Dewsbury MP Simon Reevell, who was welcomed to the site by Sewtec managing director Bernard Meehan. Also attending were representatives of Kirklees Council and Leeds City Council. The 5,500sq ft building has already resulted in six new jobs, including two graduate designers. It is expected that a further four positions will become available early next year. As well as its R&D function, a secure build area will also be created where confidential customer projects can be developed and constructed in complete privacy. Sewtec’s blue-chip customer list includes several major multi-nationals. The company carries out installations throughout the world, including Russia, Canada, Brazil, South Africa, Japan and Australia. Currently, 80% of the company’s business is overseas. Turnover has quadrupled in the last five years and Sewtec now employs nearly 100 people. With the majority of projects

■ NEW LINES: Dewsbury MP Simon Reevell MP (right) with managing director Bernard Meehan (left), and research manager Gary Robinson at the opening of Sewtec Automation’s research and development centre

requiring considerable capital investment from companies, the Sewtec facility will work alongside customer teams to assess the feasibility and costings for any proposed new system and create initial test rigs.

The stand-alone operation will ensure a high level of confidentiality for all new projects. The R&D Centre will also offer some graduate training opportunities, enabling them to gain experience in all

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areas of design and automation. It is anticipated that trainees will be able to move on to positions within Sewtec’s main manufacturing operation. In addition, Sewtec is partnering with a number of universities, including Huddersfield University’s Engineering Department and the Keyworth Institute at Leeds University, to drive innovation and new product development in a number of specialist areas such as robotic systems, high speed continuous motion assembly systems, tamper-evident machines and track and trace technology. Mr Meehan said: ““The continuing development of technology means both products and pack formats are becoming increasingly complex and this makes the design and installation of effective assembly and packing systems ever-more challenging. “Our new R&D centre will enable us to provide vital early support work for our customers, which will help to ease the decision-making process for investment in new systems. “It will also allow us to refine and further improve our design and technical expertise and so continue to expand our product offering and grow our business in both existing and new markets.” Sewtec was established in 1867 as the design and development house for Singer, the sewing machine manufacturer. In 1982, the company broke away from the sewing industry to become involved in special purpose applications for the worldwide automotive sector. Since 1987 Sewtec has concentrated on FMCG – or fast-moving consumer goods – industries.

INSIDE Award hopefuls A RECRUITMENT firm in Huddersfield is bidding for a top prize. E3 Recruitment is among the finalists in the Ready For Business Awards 2013, which will see the cream of the country’s start-up businesses attend a spectacular ceremony in London to celebrate enterprise and innovation. E3 Recruitment specialises in engineering, manufacturing and technical recruitment.

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Winner PADDOCK-based Continental Sports has landed the contract to supply sports and leisure equipment for Huddersfield University’s new £22.5m learning and leisure centre scheme.

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Majestic warmed by summer wines A BIG rise in sales of Prosecco lifted half-year profits at wine merchant Majestic – after more Britons turned to the tipple to toast the good summer weather. Profits before tax in the 26 weeks to 30 September rose by 4.2% on last year to £9.5m, while total sales increased by 3.3% to £130.2m. As well as a 39% rise in demand for the £9-£10 Italian sparking wine, chief executive Steve Lewis said the barbecue summer also boosted sales of Rose from Provence by 50%, and Argentinian Malbec by 40%. “The UK population is falling in love with wine and continues to do so,” he said. However, distortions caused by the timing of Easter and the Jubilee last year caused a 0.4% fall in like-for-like sales, which exclude takings from the new stores Majestic has been adding in its major expansion drive.

The Watford-based company, which has a store at Queensgate in Huddersfield, recently added six shops to its portfolio and is set to launch its 200th in Petersfield on Friday. The company, which also has stores in Leeds, Wakefield, York and Sheffield, has plans for five more locations before Christmas as part of ambitions to grow to 330 sites within eight years. Mr Lewis said its new look “click and collect” online business will also be an important driver of growth, particularly in the critical 14 days of trading before Christmas. Online orders count for roughly a tenth of total UK retail sales after growing by 8.3% in the half year. Mr Lewis said that the increasing popularity of entertaining at home should continue to boost demand for its “fine wine” range, which it recently

consolidated to focus on bigger brands. Sales of still wine priced at £20 or more per bottle grew by 15.6% during the period to £7.4m. “These results show we continue to make steady progress towards our strategic growth objectives and we are very well prepared for the peak Christmas trading period,” said Mr Lewis. Following the results, Majestic’s board increased its interim dividend by 5% to 4.2p per share, which will be paid on January 3. Majestic Vintners opened its first Wine Warehouse in Wood Green, North London, in 1980. By the end of 1985 there were 13 stores in the Majestic estate. Majestic Wine Warehouses floated on the Alternative Investment Market in 1996 and opened is 100th store in 2002.

■ CHEERS: Majestic is benefiting from Britons’ love of fine wines

Aberdeen secures £660m deal

Capita boss set to leave

ABERDEEN Asset Management is to become Europe’s biggest independent fund manager after striking a deal worth up to £660m with Lloyds Banking Group. The takeover of Scottish Widows Investment Partnership will result in Lloyds holding a 9.9% stake in Aberdeen while the two companies will also form a long-term strategic partnership. Aberdeen manages about £200bn of funds and is set to add another £136bn once the acquisition of Edinburgh-based SWIP completes early next year. Aberdeen fought off competition from other possible bidders,

THE boss of the UK’s biggest outsourcing company is to stand down after 26 years building the firm into one of the mainstays of the FTSE 100 Index. Paul Pindar has been chief executive of Capita since 1999, having joined in 1987 when working for 3i as an adviser in the company’s management buy-out. It listed on the London stock market in 1991 with a turnover of £25m, but is now worth more than £6bn and employs 62,000 people worldwide. The company, whose contracts include an eight-year deal to administer the TV licensing service for the

including Australian investment bank Macquarie, to secure a deal that will see it overtake Schroders as Europe’s biggest investment house. Its shares gained 62.90 to reach 489.70. Lloyds has been holding a six-month auction for SWIP, part of the bank’s Scottish Widows insurance arm, as it sells off assets to shore up its balance sheet and focus on its UK retail and commercial banking businesses. The group, which is 32% owned by the taxpayer, will continue to own Scottish Widows, the group’s life, pensions and investment business.

BBC, has been in the FTSE 100 Index since 2004. Mr Pindar said he will leave the company in February to establish a portfolio of private equity opportunities. He will be replaced by deputy Andy Parker, who had been linked to the vacant chief executive’s post at troubled rival Serco, which has been dogged with controversies over its handling of key Government contracts. In contrast to Serco, which last week issued a profits warning, Capita said it had secured £2.9bn of major new contract wins.

Page 2 Liv takes new role A BT executive is to become the youngest female FTSE 100 boss by taking over as head of water company Severn Trent. Liv Garfield, 38, who has described herself as a “working mum of two kids”, was lured to the utility giant with a pay package worth up to £2.4m after two-and-a-half years in charge of the telecoms giant’s Openreach division, overseeing its £2.5bn roll-out of fibre broadband. Ms Garfield, who has worked her way up the ranks at BT after joining in 2002, will now become chief executive of a company with 4.2m customers and which earlier this year rejected a £5.3bn takeover offer.

Biscuit buyer JAMMIE Dodgers and Wagon Wheels maker Burton’s has been swallowed up by the owner of National Lottery operator Camelot in a £350m deal. The Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan, whose worldwide investments also include the UK’s Busy Bees nursery chain, indicated it was looking to expand the business. St Albans-based Burton’s employs more than 2,000 staff in the UK with plants in Llantarnam in south Wales, Blackpool and Edinburgh as well as a chocolate refinery in Moreton, Merseyside.

SHARE PRICES NORTH AMERICAN American Express £51.41 +0.02 Gannett 1680.11 -8.07 Hess Corp £51.19 -0.24 Microsoft £23.15 -0.34 Motors Liquidation 46.55 Wal-Mart Stores £49.16 -0.01 AEROSPACE & DEFENCE Avon Rbbr 5591/2 +4 BAE Systems 4461/8 -27/8 Rolls-Royce 1233 +9 AIM Brady Plc 70 AUTOMOBILES & PARTS GKN 3723/4 +51/8 BANKS Barclays 2513/8 +2 HSBC 695 +8 Lloyds Banking Gp 761/8 +3/4 Ryl Scotland 3333/8 +33/8 Stan Chart 1482 +26 BEVERAGES 1 Diageo £20 /4 +1/8 SABMiller £321/4 +3/8 CHEMICALS Croda £235/8 Elementis 98 2531/4 +15/8 Johnsn Mat £301/2 +3/8 CONSTRUCTION & MATERIALS Balfour Beatty 2667/8 +3/8 Costain 2981/2 +3 ELECTRICITY

Drax Gp 671 +81/2 SSE 1389 -10 ELECTRONIC & ELECTRICAL EQUIPMENT Laird 2533/8 +41/4 EQUITY INVESTMENT INSTRUMENTS Alliance Trust 4511/2 +31/2 FIXED LINE TELECOM SERVICES BT Grp 382 +21/4 Cable & Wireless 473/4 +3/8 Comm 1 Colt Group 128 /2 +5/8 KCOM 1041/4 -1/4 3 Talktalk Telecom 277 /8 -1/8 FOOD & DRUG RETAILERS Morrison W 2687/8 +15/8 Sainsbury 4111/2 +21/2 Tesco 358 +31/2 FOOD PRODUCERS AB Food £231/2 +1/8 Tate Lyle 821 +61/2 7 Unilever £24 /8 +1/4 GAS, WATER & MULTIUTILITIES Centrica 3431/4 National Grid 7741/2 +1/2 Pennon Grp 640 -2 Severn 1828 -2 United Utils 6911/2 -1 GENERAL FINANCIAL 3i Group 3461/8 -23/4 ICAP 3901/4 +23/8 London StockExch 1585 +5 Man Group 843/4 +13/4 Provident Financial 1590 +10

Schroders £247/8 Schroders NV £201/8 GENERAL INDUSTRIALS REXAM 506 +11/2 Smiths Grp 1433 +2 GENERAL RETAILERS Ashley L 271/4 +1/4 Carphone Whse 2743/4 -1/2 Dixons Retail 481/8 -1/8 5 Home Retail 194 /8 +13/8 1 Inchcape 615 /2 Kingfisher 3891/4 +11/8 M&S 5031/2 +5 3 Mothercare 400 /4 -71/4 7 Next £54 /8 WH Smith 9811/2 +101/2 HEALTH CARE EQUIPMENT & SERVICES Smith Nph 808 +1 HOUSEHOLD GOODS Aga Rangemaster 134 +21/4 Barrat Dev 3203/4 +75/8 Persimmon 1165 +6 Reckitt Benckiser £481/2 +3/8 Taylor Wimpey 1065/8 +15/8 INDUSTRIAL ENGINEERING IMI 1495 +4 INDUSTRIAL METALS Ferrexpo 1861/4 +35/8 INDUSTRIAL TRANSPORTATION BBA Aviation 3253/8 +11/4 LIFE INSURANCE Aviva 433 -13/4

2111/2 2001/2 1274 3463/4 3373/8 MEDIA BSkyB 822 D Mail Tst 838 1 /8 HIBU ITV 1863/4 Johnston Press 141/4 Pearson 1328 Reed Elsevier 8881/2 STV Group 303 Trinity Mirror 1673/4 Utd Business 694 UTV 215 WPP 1352 MINING Anglo American 14381/2 Antofagasta 8121/2 BHP Billiton 19401/2 Eurasian Natural 226 Res Fresnillo 9151/2 Kazakhmys 249 Lonmin 3321/4 Rio Tinto £325/8 VEDANTA 9881/2 RESOURCES MOBILE TELECOM SERVICES Inmarsat 6861/2 Vodafone Group 2343/8 NONLIFE INSURANCE Admiral Grp 1273 Lgl & Gen Old Mutual Prudential Resolution Standard Life

-13/8 +11/4 +10 -13/8 -21/4 +21/2 +61/2

Local shares Carclo Marshalls National Grid Weir Gp

348 1731/2 7741/2 £221/8

-4 -2 +1/2 +1/8

+1/4 -3/8 -10 +1/2 -21/2 +1/2 -3 -3 -6

FTSE closed at

+81/2 +1/2 +81/2 -61/4

RSA Insurance Gp 1047/8 +3/8 OIL & GAS PRODUCERS BG 12581/2 +11/2 BP 4881/2 +1/2 Cairn Energy 270 +1/4 Royal Dutch Shell £21 +1/8 A Royal Dutch Shell £22 +1/8 B Total £371/2 +3/8 Tullow Oil 8941/2 -21/2 OIL EQUIPMENT & SERVICES AMEC 1167 +2 Petrofac 1200 -239 Wood Gp(J) 805 -101/2

-26 +21/4 -81/8 +1/8 +33

+14 +3 -11

6723.46 Up 30.02

PERSONAL GOODS Burberry Gp 1495 +18 PHARMACEUTICALS & BIOTECHNOLOGY Astrazeneca £331/8 +1/8 GlaxoSmithK XD 11/2 1 Shire £28 /8 -1/4 REAL ESTATE Brit Land 614 -31/2 Hamrsn 5211/2 +1/2 3 Intu Properties 337 /4 -11/8 Land Secs 9691/2 -8 SEGRO 3283/4 -13/4 SOFTWARE ETC SERVICES Invensys 502 +23/4 Sage Group 3453/4 -3 SUPPORT SERVICES Berendsen 945 -4 Bunzl 1399 +8 Capita 977 -6 De La Rue 830 -41/2 Electrocomp 301 +1/4 Experian 1201 +4 G4S 2563/4 +21/4 Hays 1245/8 +11/8 Homeserve 2441/8 -73/4 Menzies J 769 -21/2 Rentokil 1043/4 -1/4 3 Smiths News 213 /4 -13/4 5 Wolseley £32 /8 IT HARDWARE ARM Hldgs 9591/2 +151/2 Spirent Comms 1077/8 -31/8 TOBACCO

Br Am Tob £333/4 Imperial Tobacco £241/4 LEISURE & HOTELS Bwin.Party Digital 1331/2 Carnival £221/2 Compass Grp 8951/2 easyJet 1256 Enterprise Inns 138 FirstGroup 1171/4 Go-Ahead Gp 1645 Greene King 8081/2 Intercontl Htls 1877 Intl Cons Airl 362 Ladbrokes 1781/4 Mitchells & Butlers 389 Natl Express 2537/8 Rank Org 141 Stagecoach Group 3551/2 TUI Travel 3871/4 Whitbread £341/8


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FTSE 100

INDEX 6723.46


FTSE 250

INDEX 15290.48


TOURIST RATES Tourists going abroad can expect the following rates for sterling: Australia..................... 1.62 dollars Bangladesh................ 118.00 taka Brazil............................ 3.34 reals Canada...................... 1.60 dollars China ........................... 8.78 yuan Czech Republic .... 29.80 korunas Denmark..................... 8.48 krone Euro.............................. 1.14 euro Hong Kong............... 11.87 dollars Hungary................. 318.47 forints India........................ 88.77 rupees Japan......................... 153.48 yen Mexico ...................... 18.55 pesos New Zealand ............. 1.79 dollars Norway ....................... 9.41 krone Pakistan................ 163.31 rupees Philippines ................ 60.17 pesos South Africa................ 15.31 rand South Korea............. 1486.00 won Sri Lanka .............. 199.41 rupees Sweden..................... 10.21 krona Switzerland................ 1.40 francs Taiwan ..................... 41.58 dollars Turkey...................... 3.09 new lira USA ........................... 1.54 dollars



There’s just no stopping Nicky! THERE’S nothing shy and retiring about busines s – operating from a bedroom at her “I have a large client list and the clients are recruitment company boss Nicky Battye. very loyal,” she says. “Business is going from Crosland Moor home. The owner of Fartown-based Boomerang strength to strength.” “I married my husband Michael on August Recruitment has never been backward in At the time of the “credit crunch”, Nicky 6 and set up Boomerang Recruitment on coming forward! was seriously ill and had to spend several September 15,” she says. And it’s a trait that has proved invaluable in months in hospital. “Business went well,” says Nicky. “All my building up her business. But she says: “Everyone was very clients have followed me everywhere I have Nicky was born in Lancashire, but was understanding and helped me enormously.” gone.” brought up in Huddersfield from an early age. Nicky, whose firm deals only in permanent Nicky and Michael were able to sell their She attended Bradley Junior School and recruitment, says the economic climate is Crosland Moor house and move to a new Deighton High School, but admits she was now improving. home at Fartown. never “very good” in school. “The strongest sectors for recruitment are A basement garage was converted to “I wasn’t very good at exams, but I was health and social care,” she says. provide office space for Boomerang. very good at drama,” she says. “Commercial is still struggling a little bit, but Further success followed in 2007 when “I have always been more of a ‘doing’ the engineering sector is also picking up. Nicky bought Honley-based Future person and I could never sit down and do “We need to think positively. If everyone Recruitment. nothing. I would never shut up! takes a more positive attitude then everyone will be a little bit happier. I was always dancing and Confidence is such an important putting on little shows with friends factor. for people in the street. We used “There are people who don’t to provide biscuits and charge want to work, but there are many people to come – so we made a who are desperate for that little money!” chance to show what they can During her teens, Nicky’s do.” parents owned the Horseshoe pub Nicky keeps her finger on the at Birkby. pulse by attending networking “I always wanted to be the events. She is a member of centre of attention,” says Nicky. “I Ladies4Networking, which meets had lots of friends and I used to at Nont Sarah’s, Scammonden. play pool with the workers from “It’s a massive support network Hopkinsons Valves.” for women in business,” she After leaving school, Nicky says. worked in various office admin “I would recommend any ladies roles before finding she had a in business to join.” talent for selling. Nicky says recruitment She worked at the Examiner for services should be about quality, several years, selling adverts in not quantity and believes the the entertainments section before industry’s reputation has been moving onto other areas, including dented by the way some big motors, homes and recruitment. firms in the sector operate and She was eventually headhunted the way they treat their clients by recruitment firm Manpower – and candidates. when her talent for showmanship “I’m happy to people to ring me helped land her the job. and have a chat about what they “You had to do a test, which I need and find out how we are failed twice,” she recalls. “But I different,” she says. also did a presentation, which they “I’m just the girl next door. I thought was brilliant and that got work to feed myself and my me the job.” family and aim to help people Specialising in commercial find the job they really want to do recruitment, Nicky went on to work – and go on to enjoy their career. for a number of agencies, “There’s no greater satisfaction including one in London for five than getting a thank-you card or months , before becoming an email from someone you have commercial manager for another helped.” firm looking after branches in The choice of Boomerang as Wakefield and Halifax. the name of the business has In 2005, Nicky decided it was ■ HAPPY RETURNS: Nicky Battye, of Boomerang Recruitment proved apt. “Clients just keep time to set up her own recruitment

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Nicky Battye Role: Owner Age: 40 Family: Married to Michael with daughters Kenyon, six, and Tyler Jane, four Car: Holidays: We love Spain, but the best place I have ever been is San Francisco First job: Working in administration Best thing about job: The satisfaction of getting people into work Worst thing about job: There’s nothing I don’t like about what I do – although it is dispiriting to see the large number of people having to apply for jobs Business tip: Keep working at your business, no matter how hard things get

Boomerang Recruitment Work: Permanent recruitment Site: Fartown Phone: 01484 340043 Email: nicky@boomerang Web: www.boomerang

coming back,” says Nicky. While she is dedicated to her business, Nicky believes that getting a good work-life balance is important. Working at home with two young children – and five cats – to consider, she readily admits: “I always say my full-time job is looking after my children, Kenyon and Tyler Jane. I’m mad about them. “We’re a family that believes in having fun. If it snows, we’re out there building a snowman. If it rains, we got out to play football!” Away from work, Nicky is taking a sign language course at Huddersfield New College. “I’ve always wanted to learn signing,” she says. “I’m teaching Kenyon and Tyler how to do it, too.” She’s also a big Elvis Presley fan – it says as much on a plaque outside the front door! And she’s still mad keen on dancing, music and parties. “There’s always something going on, she says. “One of my neighbours calls me the Duracell bunny because I never seem to stop!”



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Networking event HUDDERSFIELD’S Media Centre is the setting for a free breakfast networking event tomorrow. The MYNetwork event runs from 9am to 11am at the centre in Northumberland Street. It meets on the third Wednesday of each month and is backed by Ramsdens Solicitors, the Mid Yorkshire Chamber of Commerce, the Media Centre and Better Telecoms.

To promote your business to over 49,000 Examiner readers and over 230,000 online users Call: Anne Joseph 01484 437745 email:


Firm makes most of sporting chance A SPORTS equipment firm based in Huddersfield has won a home fixture. Paddock-based Continental Sports has landed the contract to supply sports and leisure equipment for Huddersfield University’s new £22.5m learning and leisure centre scheme. Continental Sports, one of the UK's leading suppliers of sports hall equipment, was selected by contractor GB Building Solutions to supply equipment for a range of sports, including basketball, volleyball, netball, badminton, table tennis and cricket for the new scheme on Wakefield Road. All sports equipment has been specified to permit play at the highest levels and will help the university attract the best sporting students and teams from across the UK and further afield. The state-of-the-art facilities under construction include an eight-court sports hall, 80-space fitness suite, squash courts and dance studios. Continental Sports, formed 49 years ago, employs 104 people in the design, manufacture, installation and maintenance of products for sports halls, gymnastics, trampolining,

■ WINNERS: Am Applegate Lettings Oriflame, with their

Forward awards ■ VAULTING AMBITION: Continental Sports managing director Nick Booth (left) with (from left) Jonathan Berry, Carl Lowery and Richard Murgatroyd at the firm's factory in Paddock

physical education, indoor and outdoor sports, changing rooms and dance aerobics. Continental Sports managing director Nick Booth said: “Our team is delighted to be involved in providing the sports equipment to such a prestigious local project. “To provide the sports equipment to such an exciting scheme virtually on the doorstep of our Huddersfield

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factory is something about which we all feel particularly proud.” Alan Johnson, deputy director of estates at the university, said: “We are committed to supporting the local economy and wider regional businesses wherever and whenever possible. Being able to work with wo r l d - c l a s s s u p p l i e r s i n o u r home-town reinforces this commitment.”

We’e growing in confidence YORKSHIRE business leaders are feeling more confident about their future prospects and plan to invest in growth opportunities next year, says a survey. Figures from Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking show that 90% of bosses polled said they felt more optimistic about their prospects for expansion now compared to this time last year – suggesting the region could benefit from an uplift in business confidence next year. More than three-quarters of respondents also said that they plan to invest in growth opportunities next year using their existing cash reserves or by securing new sources of finance. The results were gathered at the Lloyds Bank “Big Picture” event held at York’s National Railway Museum and attended by more than 350 business leaders. The event brought together Yorkshire’s policymakers, local enterprise partners, academics and business leaders to discuss the opportunities and challenges facing firms in the region.

The research also revealed that the majority of businesses believe they are stronger as a result of the recession – with 83% agreeing that the challenging economic environment has made them more lean and efficient. Meanwhile, attracting and retaining talent was identified by attendees as a key challenge. Some 76% felt that a skills shortage could hinder the region’s economic recovery in 2014. Stephen Harris, area director for Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking in North, East and West Yorkshire, said: “The results show that after several years of caution, businesses are beginning to feel more confident and optimistic about their future trading prospects. “The fact that the vast majority of leaders polled said that they are planning to invest for growth next year is a clear sign of intent and should act as a catalyst for the region’s economic revival. “The Big Picture Events are designed to stimulate debate around the steps businesses can take to grow and evolve.”

TWO Huddersfie have taken top aw contest. Amy Wray and G among the winne Barclays-Forwar Business Awards their awards, a h at a special lunc in Leeds. Amy, managing d Holmfirth-based was named youn the year, while G manager with Sw skincare and frag Oriflame, won th home-based bus Amy launched he bedroom with jus idea. With seven the sales and let launched the com of a recession an retail premises. Grace, based at B of Oriflame’s mo in Britain, turnin 10 nationwide sa than 500 people She joined the co part-time sales c her role as a hos KPMG, but was s joined full time, b manager two yea a 28% growth in and is forecastin year. Among other win managing directo supplier CNG in overall award and for corporate lea competition orga and business ne Forward Ladies. Announcing the Caroline Pullich, banking at Barcl has created a cu company that ha demonstrated th policy for staff; t numbers in the p company continu huge difference t has increased tu £98m in the prev achieved a net pr industry measur measures custom which is 25 point industry average

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Page 5

Should zero hours mean zero rights?

my Wray (left), of s, and Grace Bylinka, of ir awards

d Ladies s for two

eld businesswomen awards in a national

Grace Bylinka were ers in the rd Ladies Women in ds. They each received hand blown lilac bowl, ch at the Queens Hotel

director of d Applegate Lettings, ng business women of Grace, who is regional wedish cosmetics, grances company he award for siness woman. her business in a ust a phone line and an n years experience in tting industry, she mpany in the middle nd operates without

Birchencliffe, is one ost successful traders ng over £500,000 with ales teams and more working to her. company in 2007 as a consultant alongside spitality assistant at so successful she becoming a regional ars later. She achieved 2011, 21% in 2012 ng 20% growth this

nners, Jacqui Hall, tor of commercial gas Harrogate won the nd also the category ader of the year in the anised by Barclays etworking body

overall award, , head of relationship lays said: “Our winner ulture across the as true values, and his with an open door tripled employee past five years as the ues to grow; made a to bottom line profit, urnover to £150m from vious year and promoter score – an rement which mer satisfaction – nts higher than the e for her sector.”

ITH no regulation of W zero-hours contracts – and no restrictions on an employer agree-

ing to enter into a zero-hours arrangement with an individual – their use has been in the spotlight recently, prompting some considerable debate. But, what is the controversy? Are zero-hours contracts as bad as they seem? A zero-hours contract typically refers to a contract of employment under which an individual has no guarantee of work, no set hours and is paid only in relation to the hours worked. This gives the employer the benefit of a flexible workforce, which can be an invaluable advantage in certain industries, such as hospitality and retail, where business levels and staffing needs can be unpredictable and may fluctuate significantly throughout the year. Likewise, however, more often than not there will be no obligation on the individual to accept work offered. Individuals will also be entitled to be paid at least the national minimum wage in respect of the hours they have worked and, subject to the relevant eligibility criteria being satisfied, may even be entitled to receive statutory sick pay. It would appear that the use of zero-hours contracts provides the flexibility sought by both parties. However, on September 16, 2013, Vince Cable announced that the Department for


Business, Innovation & Skills will worked. This can result in a key adminlaunch a consultation on zero-hours istrative difficulty for employers of contracts later in 2013. working out the statutory holiday pay Employers need to assess the employ- fo r i n d iv i d u a l s wo rk i n g u n d e r ment status of the individuals working zero-hours contracts, given their irreguunder zero-hours contracts at the start lar and unpredictable hours. of the assignment. Courts and tribunals A further complication is the obligawill not only look at the written con- tion to auto-enrol eligible jobholders tract, but will also look at how the into company pension schemes. For contract has been performed in prac- individuals on zero-hours contracts tice. who have fluctuating earnings, and Employers should be particularly whose pay dates may not coincide with careful where they are giving individu- the relevant pay reference period to als regular work on a regular basis over assess their earnings for auto-enrolan extensive period of time, and where ment, it can be difficult to determine there appears to be mutuality of obliga- when an individual reaches the qualifytion in terms of the offer and acceptance of work. Workers will be entitled to accrue holiday pay, the level of w h i c h i s determined by Things are certainly hotting up for the region’s SME’s as many approach their staging date the number of and those who do have a bit longer are contemplating how and where to start. hours they have

Neil Wilson is an employment lawyer at Chadwick Lawrence Solicitors

Festive boost for Mamas & Papas NURSERY goods firm Mamas & Papas has reported soaraway demand for products designed to celebrate baby’s first Christmas. The Colnebridge-based company said products from its “First Christmas” range were “flying off the shelves”. The company, which employs 1,473 people around the world, has 66 stores In the UK and its products are sold in more than 3,000 locations in 49 countries. A spokeswoman said Christmas baubles, which come in three colours and prints, had been selling at a rate of one per second. Stores were also struggling to keep stocked with the festive Silver Hanging Star – which can be

ing earnings threshold to trigger the auto-enrolment obligation. In practice, the way to deal with such issues is either to enrol all employees contractually (including those on z e ro - h o u r s c o n t r a c t s ) i n t o a n auto-enrolment compliant scheme, or to use a sophisticated payroll system that will ensure that deductions are only made in a month where the individual reaches the qualifying earnings threshold. Finally, individuals on zero-hours contracts do not enjoy any specific protection from discrimination. Caution should, however, be exercised when considering whether or not different benefits should be given to individuals on zero-hours contracts, as they are likely to fall into the statutory definition of part-time employees and so any less favourable treatment may need to be justified.

personalised with the baby’s name – as they sold at a rate of more than one a minute. She said: “Each year the press is inundated with reports of what is going to be the ‘must have kids Christmas present’ but in recent years, Mamas & Papas has seen shoppers become more drawn to buying presents that can be personalised as they strive to create keepsakes of those never to be repeated moments.” Other top sellers for Christmas 2013 include traditional gifts such as the Mamas & Papas Hobby Horse with more than one sold per hour. Mamas & Papas was launched in 1981 by husband and wife David and Luisa Scacchetti.


Revell Ward Partner, Jennifer Davies, has built herself a reputation as a “bit of an expert in the field” and has surveyed a number of the region’s payroll bureau’s and software providers to get their thoughts and actions on how they plan to help their clients deal with the administrative burden of auto-enrolment. For the bigger players (those with over 200 employees) the pension providers may be willing to deal with the administration side (most importantly the communications with employees). SME’s need to be aware though not to get tied in with one provider for the long term as there is a risk that costs will increase with these providers in the future. Many businesses are therefore looking to the middleware software providers as a solution to the administrative burden. For SME’s with less than 200 employees the costs of going direct to middleware software is probably prohibitive and some joined-up thinking is required to use economies of scale and spread the costs over more businesses. Hence Jennifer has created the Revell Ward “Auto-enrolment Toolkit”. The Toolkit will cover everything from what’s already in place, what auto-enrolment will cost you, the minimum requirements and options if you want more than the minimum, payroll software that communicates with the pension providers and communication software that communicates with your employees.

To find out more about Jennifer’s Auto-Enrolment Toolkit or for a FREE consultation, call Jennifer on 01484 538351



University backs global campaign A MAJOR campaign to promote entrepreneurship among young people is being backed by Huddersfield University. The university has joined forces with universities across the Yorkshire region to support Global Entrepreneurship Week, which runs until November 24. Now in its sixth year, Global Entrepreneurship Week is being backed by Yorkshire’s Graduate Entrepreneurship Project, a partnership of 10 of the county’s higher education institutions. The organisation encourages and supports entrepreneurship among the region’s student and graduate population. The global campaign spans 130 countries and is being marked in Yorkshire by a region-wide programme of events to inspire and support the region’s next generation of business leaders. As part of Global Entrepreneurship Week, the enterprise team at Huddersfield University is hosting a series of events to inform and inspire budding entrepreneurs. They include a networking skills workshop tomorrow at the 3M Buckley Innovation Centre in Firth Street, Huddersfield, and an enterprise showcase Christmas market on Monday, November 25, at the university’s Business School. Colin Harrison, manager of Yorkshire’s Graduate Entrepreneurship Project, said: “We’re delighted to be playing our part in Global Entrepreneurship Week. “The partnership between Yorkshire’s higher education institutions provides unprecedented start-up support for the region’s student and graduates, making Yorkshire one of the best places in the country for students and graduates to begin their journey into business.” Aminur Rahman, a graduate of Huddersfield University, set up his fledgling photography business AR Moments with support from the Graduate

■ FOCUS ON BUSINESS: Huddersfield University graduate Aminur Rahman, who has set up a photography business Entrepreneurship Project. He said: “Global Entrepreneurship Week provides superb opportunities for other entrepreneurs to access similar help in turning their fledgling business ideas into reality.” Andrew Devenport, chief executive of Youth Business International, which hosts Global Entrepreneurship Week in the UK, called for more people to get involved in the Week. He said: “Setting up a business is a great employment opportunity for many people who have the talent, but lack the means or the confidence to progress their

ideas. “I would encourage anyone with a business or business idea to participate in Global Entrepreneurship Week and find out what support is available to help them take a step forward. “By helping people to help themselves, we are equipping the next generation of entrepreneurs to make a valuable contribution to both the economy and society.” Visit or

SMEs should play by ‘big boys’ rules SMALL businesses in Kirklees have been urged to “play by big business rules” in order to get their share of increased bank lending. Figures from the Bank of England recorded a £720m increase in overall net lending to non-financial businesses during September – the fastest growth in business lending since January. But the share going to small and medium-sized businesses fell by £383m. Nick Brook (pictured), of TaxAssist Accountants in Huddersfield, said: “Big businesses have whole departments dedicated to data recording, financial forecasts and business planning, so are able to tick all the bankers’ boxes when approaching them for loans. “But small businesses, which have a strong business case, can open the door to vital funding by playing by some golden big business rules.” Mr Brook urged smaller firms to work with their advisers to produce a clear business plan and cash flow forecast backed up by reliable evidence and a good track record. Firms should also understand their numbers and practice presenting their business plan before meeting the bank. He said: “For loans over £25,000, banks will expect to take some sort of security, typically a second charge on a property or other asset. Where security isn’t available, the bank has the option of the government-backed Enterprise Finance Guarantee Scheme.” He urged firms: “Show that the borrowing requested will be paid back and that it’s enough to run the business and how you will fund your living expenses. “Never under or over borrow – under borrowers could be forced to go back to the bank within a year, cap in hand; over borrowers pay more in interest than they need to. “Keep in touch with your bank and provide them with up to date information including good news and bad news – banks do not like surprises!”

Family first for financial advice

Firms upbeat about prospects HALF of UK entrepreneurs expect their revenue to increase by 30% or more over the next three years, according to a survey. The Entrepreneurial Environment report from Youth Business International and the Kauffman Foundation also showed that 90% of 150 UK entrepreneurs polled predict an overall increase in their revenue. The survey, to coincide with Global Entrepreneurship Week 2013, hosted by YBI and Barclays, revealed that UK entrepreneurs are forecasting new ventures as well – with 30% of small business owners expecting to start a further business within the next 12 months. The figure rises to 53% for first-time business owners. In addition, more than three quarters of business owners predict they will be employing up to 20 people three years after starting up. This year’s research paints a much brighter picture for UK entrepreneurship compared to figures revealed in previous YBI reports. Last year, more than two-thirds of small business owners surveyed said the situation for UK entrepreneurs had stagnated or worsened over the previous two years. Andrew Devenport, chief executive of Youth Business International, said: “It’s encouraging to know that there is light at the end of the tunnel for UK entrepreneurship, with one in two business owners expecting their revenue to rocket in the next few years, higher than the overall global average.”

Page 6

■ DECISIONS: Mike Day, Yorkshire spokesman for Bibby Financial Services

FRIENDS and family are the most trusted sources of business advice for small business owners in Yorkshire – more so than accountants, financial advisers and solicitors. That’s the main finding of a survey by Bibby Financial Services. The UK’s largest independent invoice finance provider found that one in four small and medium sized enterprises in the region said they trust friends and family the most when seeking guidance, followed by accountants (20%), financial advisers (16%), the internet (11%) and solicitors (4%). When asked where they look for advice most often, more than a quarter said they turn to online resources, with friends and family (22%) the second most-frequented source. Accountants (17%), financial advisers (8%) and solicitors (2%) came lower down the list. Mike Day, spokesman for Bibby Financial Services in Yorkshire, said: “Undoubtedly friends and family are always on hand to lend

an ear and the internet can be a quick way to get some general advice, but we would encourage business owners to plan time to speak to their funding partners and professional advisers when big decisions are being made.” Despite frequent use of the internet, 55% of those polled admitted that they prefer to receive face-to-face advice, either in a one-to-one meeting or in a group setting – with only 20% stating that browsing the internet was their favoured way of finding information. Tax payments (28%), sales and marketing (16%) and funding (15%) are the topics on which businesses most frequently seek advice. Bibby Financial Services is the UK’s leading independent invoice finance specialist, currently providing cash flow funding for over 4,000 businesses, handling annual client turnover of £3.9bn and advancing in the region of £370m. Bibby Financial Services recently further increased its available funds to £430m to meet increasing demands for its finance facilities.



Page 7

Safety awards galore for group

Energy-improvement project under way A SPECIALIST in sustainable energy is leading a project to help tackle fuel poverty in Calderdale. Greendale, part of construction and development group Southdale, will initially deliver a range of energy efficiency measures to homes in the Park Ward area of Halifax. This programme is to be complemented with similar works in other areas within the borough. Work is now complete at a demonstration show house, which will be used to illustrate measures which can help to reduce fuel bills in the homes as part of the Energy Company Obligation programme. Nick O’Connor, director of Greendale, said: “The show home is a great opportunity to illustrate what can be done to improve the energy efficiency of homes. Working in Calderdale, we are making a real effort to tackle fuel poverty by investing in upgrades to properties in this area and we are proud to be working with them to deliver work which will provide real benefits to residents in our home town.” As well as delivering ECO-funded work to existing homes, the new Greendale business will also lead Southdale’s first move into offering planned maintenance for home owners and landlords. Greendale is led by Nick O’Connor and Mark Pickles, who have more than two decades of experience in the market between them. The pair have provided ECO enhancements and planned maintenance to more than 13,000 homes across Yorkshire, including 12,000 as part of an enhanced Decent Homes Project for the Wakefield and District Housing Partnership.

BUILDING products specialist The Myers Group has won a prestigious health and safety award. The family-owned group, based at Bradley Mills in Huddersfield, lifted the Sir Frank Davies Trophy at the annual Mineral Products Association Awards in London. The awards celebrate health and safety achievements from across the industry and the group was rewarded for its commitment as a SME to health and safety excellence over the past 12 months. The group also won runners-up prizes in three categories. It was recognised in the Engineering Initiatives category for its robot installations at Johnsons Wellfield Quarries, which have removed health hazards associated with

silica dust, noise and hand arm vibration. It won the category for LGVs and Company Vehicles Safety for a waste transfer station traffic management initiative which has significantly reduced the risk of injury throughout the site. And it scooped the Leadership, Training, Management category for developing business-specific training courses, management commitment and its safety climate survey. A spokeswoman for the group said: “This fantastic achievement would not have been possible without the commitment and enthusiasm to improve health and safety performance from every employee throughout the Myers Group. “We hope that this is just the start of our success and hope to be back next year!”

■ SAFE HANDS: Pictured at the awards are (from left) Myers Group chairman John Myers, Johnsons Wellfield masonry supervisor James Turner, group health and safety adviser Paul Bradley, Johnsons Wellfield works manager Neil Mallinson, managing director James Berry and waste transfer supervisor Ben Earle


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Orchard Networks ORCHARD Networks has appointed Paul Windmill (pictured) as head of telecoms as it prepares for major expansion of its telecoms business – with 25 new jobs planned over the next three years. The firm, which is part of Elland-based Orchard Group, launched its telecoms arm earlier this year to offer landline, mobile, broadband and VoIP installation and technical support alongside its existing IT solutions, waste management, energy purchasing and energy efficiency services. Neil Ewing, director of Orchard Networks, said the company was preparing for aggressive expansion and that Mr Windmill would be responsible for driving forward its growth”

Alasdair Urwin

Chadwick Lawrence LAw firm Chadwick Lawrence has appointed Alasdair Urwin as an associate solicitor in its dispute resolution department. Mr Urwin, who is based at the firm’s Huddersfield office, qualified in 2009 and has specialised in a variety of areas, including professional negligence and fraud. He also deals with shareholder and company disputes, debt recovery matters, contractual disputes, intellectual property disputes and property litigation.

Putting focus on HR RECRUITMENT and selection provides the topic for discussion at a seminar for businesses. The Mid Yorkshire Chamber of Commerce is hosting its first MY Chamber HR session on recruitment and selection at 8.30am on Thursday, November 28, at the chamber’s Lockwood offices. Chamber HR was launched this summer to offer chamber members free seminars, surgeries and online “how-to” guides as well as access to a free HR health check and an online “ask a question” facility. Chamber HR is delivered by Halifax-based Organic HR and Huddersfield firm Pennine Business Partners. With the average cost of filling a vacancy in the UK expected to cost businesses about £5,000, the first seminar will offer practical tips to ensure employers get it right first time. Go to

Movers and shakers

Page 8

Agency proves its Ready for Business A RECRUITMENT firm operating in Huddersfield is bidding to scoop a top prize. E3 Recruitment is among the finalists in the first-ever Ready For Business Awards 2013, which will see the cream of the country’s start-up businesses gather at a spectacular ceremony in London to celebrate enterprise and innovation. E3 Recruitment, which was formed last in May by Tracie Norton and Andrew Pilling, is already one of the UK’s leading engineering, manufacturing and technical recruitment specialists and has claimed the Best B2B Start-Up award in the regional category for Yorkshire and Humber. The Lindley-based firm will now compete against six other enterprising businesses at the national finals, which are being held at the House of Commons in London on December 2, 2013. Ready for Business, the investment readiness start-up programme that supports new enterprises across England, has delivered more than 2,500 new jobs nationwide since its launch last summer – with 387 jobs created in Yorkshire and Humber alone. The programme, which aims to create 6,000 businesses with 10,000 new jobs, is supported by the Government’s Regional Growth Fund and Barclays and is delivered by a consortium of leading enterprise agencies, including the National Enterprise Network; in the Yorkshire and Humber. Since opening its doors earlier this year, E3 Recruitment has built up an impressive

■ COMMONS TOUCH: Tracie Norton and Andrew Pilling, of E3 Recruitment, are set to travel to Westminster for the first ready for Business Awards

client and candidate database and has seen its predicted turnover rise more than five times its initial estimate. Tracie said: “We are delighted to have received this prestigious award so soon after establishing the business. Setting up your own venture is extremely hard work but the support we received from Ready for Business was invaluable. To have our efforts recognised is a huge achievement and we look forward to going on to the national finals.” The awards recognise achievements across three categories – Best Growth

Potential Start-Up, Best B2B Start-Up and Best B2C Start-Up. More than 2,500 businesses have been established since the programme was set up in 2012 to provide individuals with concentrated support in the pre-start stages of their new business, including intensive enterprise training via free Get Ready for Business Seminars delivered in partnership with Barclays, one-on-one help from a dedicated business advisor to explore and assess their business ideas and expert analysis into developing a business plan.

Fast route to retail success for Ginetta fashion range BATLEY-born businessman Lawrence Tomlinson already cuts a dash on the racetrack with his race car manufacturing business Ginetta Cars. Now sister firm Ginetta Lifestyle has launched a new range of clothes this week – taking the heritage of the car manufacturing business as its inspiration. Ginetta Cars, founded in 1958, is steeped in motorsport history, which is reflected in the luxury finish of Lifestyle’s clothing. Every garment is designed and handmade in Britain. The new range was unveiled at Hoopers department store in

Harrogate, where the “versatile and contemporary” clothes have been hailed s a welcome addition to the menswear department. Mr Tomlinson, who is chairman of Ginetta and the Government’s Entrepreneur in Residence, said: “This is an especially proud moment for me, as I headhunted our designer, Laura Tomlinson, straight from Huddersfield University. I’m passionate about developing the next generation of entrepreneurs and gave Laura the opportunity to establish the Lifestyle brand.” Mr Tomlinson has an honorary doctorate from the university.


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■ LEADING LIGHTS: Lawrence Tomlinson and Ginetta Lifestyle designer Laura Tomlinson


Kirklees Business News November 19 2013

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